Developing a Concise and Focused Dissertation Topic
Perhaps one of the most essential steps in writing a dissertation is developing a concise and focused topic that is interesting and challenging enough to earn the praise of your peers and advisor. You may already have a range of topics in your mind, but remember that you more precise and narrow your topic the easier time you will have researching it and writing it. You don’t have to be an expert, you just have to master the craft of writing.
Try some of these tips to learn how to develop a concise and focused dissertation topic:
- Make a list of the topics that you are the most interesting to you. We can’t stress this point enough. The amount of effort you put into your paper will be greatly affected by how much you enjoy the process. This is a great way of making sure you know your topic well-enough to be able to ask the right questions that are specific and goal-oriented.
- Break your topic up further and think of some questions you would like answered. You don’t need to answer these questions right away, but asking yourself a set of specific questions will ensure that you are finding small points worth researching and discussing. Consider incorporating some questions that others might have.
- Narrow your topic by making a preliminary reading list. Many of these sources might be what you will eventually be reading in your research, but looking at some titles, summaries, and abstracts will help you focus your dissertation topic to a more precise question that needs answering.
- Ask yourself the Who? What? Where? When? And Why? Questions. This trick works to develop concise and focuses topics in all types of writings. For example, if your topic is eating disorders, asking yourself these simple questions can narrow your topic to eating disorders by teenagers by simply asking yourself “Who”?
- List terms that are related to your topic. Practices brainstorming a list of terms or phrases that are related to your broad topic. Let’s say you start with something as broad as “unhealthy behavior”; taking related terms like smoking, overeating, not exercising will already make your topic more specific and a lot more interesting.
Regularly trying out the above tips will increase the precision of your dissertation and other types of writing. With enough practice writing a concise and focused paper will come naturally, and you will see the interest in your writing by your peers grow tremendously.
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